When I was studying at university, it was a time when health and safety was just beginning to be a big deal. We did wear our Mickey Mouse ears when using power tools and respirators when working with resins and solvents. However, this practice wasn’t generally carried out when one wasn’t working.
What have I done?!
Setting a challenge to produce a piece of artwork so depicting how you feel about your favourite piece of music.
Well, it was a challenge for me, as I dare say for many of you.
I am currently working on a self-initiated project to illustrate a book about King’s Lynn. It is a fascination town with much history. I felt inspired to create this project whilst invigilating at our summer exhibition in St Nicholas’ Chapel. One of the church staff was giving a guided tour about the church and was enthusiastically talking about the church’s history. This gave me the idea to create a book about the history of the town. I then spent many trips to King’s Lynn sketching around the town and taking photographs. Fortunately, when the first lock down happened, I already had a large number of images to be working from and have been able to continue since. I have so far created 10 drawings out of a list of 55 that keeps on growing as I discover more and more buildings to add!
What do you do if you are an artist and you are made to stay at home for a year?
During these difficult times I don’t think it is exaggerating to describe my studio as a life saver. I am able to walk to it every day, if I want to, and I take a flask of coffee and biscuit, and it brings me great joy and happiness to be able to create various pieces of artwork and keep myself busy.
In the past many of my early mentors would deride the work of illustrators and graphic designers as ‘not real artists ‘. They were so wrong.
The art of illustration demands many creative skills. Not only in the handling of materials to produce an acceptable result for a paying client, but also it requires an imagination and storytelling ability which goes way beyond the mere copying of a subject, as so many artists tend to do.
New Year’s Day 2020 feels like a lifetime ago now. I’m certain we all had plans, big plans, small plans, for the year – for me there were exhibitions, craft fairs, teaching, workshops and shows, with something booked all the way through from the beginning of March till Christmas. I was excited. This was going to be my busiest year ever. I worried whether I would have enough work, frames and mounts, worried about whether tools and lino would arrive in time for the classes. I was worried it might all go well; I was worried it might all go badly –
This is a difficult and trying time for us all, so here is a little breath of Cote d’Azur to cheer you up.
After all the cancellations of my trips during the spring and summer, I decided to take the bull by the horns and try to make it to France in August to see my daughter. Not sure if I was brave or foolhardy, but the journey to Luton and onwards to Nice was extremely challenging, but so worth it.
To give you a little background – I only started painting in 2014 after I closed my business and retired. I ran a successful greetings card publishing business for over 23 years designing, selling and publishing greeting cards in many different languages all over the world. During my career I met artists, illustrators, graphic designers and photographers and this fuelled my interest in art.